Sunday, May 23, 2010

Marion Lennox & seals

My friend, Marion Lennox, who writes fabulous romances, occasionally sends emails that are just too good  for an audience of one or two, and since she doesn't blog, I decided to hijack an occasional email. So with her permission, I'm going to share her latest, about her weekend, with photos.
Gorgeous gorgeous day, lovely enough to entice me out to Port Philip Bay where the seals are enjoying their new Chinaman's Hat. FYI the old Chinaman's Hat was a bell buoy the seals loved.

 It eventually fell to bits and everyone including seals were so sad they built them another one - the seals then ignored it until it started to rot. Now it pongs and it's wonderful.

We went out in the boat, it being one of those amazing  milliseconds of time when nothing's fallen out, over, in, it's not on the hard getting its bottom scraped, nothing desperately needs sanding, the tender's motor's working, the tender's not leaking, we can find the life jackets, someone remembers the thermos, hundred dollar bills have stopped for one moment being used to paper the deck, the weather's fabulous, we're all free, no one's seasick, and even the seals are doing their thing. This may never happen again in this lifetime but for yesterday we're truly grateful.

I loved this pic of a seal family, with two females looking on as the big bull seal snores in the sun, and the cheeky youngster climbs all over him.

A curious seal swam up to investigate...

  ...took one look at the strange creatures in the boat and flipped away back to the seal colony.

Thanks, Marion, for sharing such a lovely event.
Marion's books nearly always have animals in them, whether they're dogs, cows, frogs or twin baby alpacas. I wonder if we'll ever get seals...

Anyone here have experience of yachties? I was just a kid when my brother-in-law built his first small boat ( a mirror) in my dad's garage. It started something and over the years my sister and her family had some wonderful experiences with their various yachts  - mostly built by my brother-in-law. I still remember the letter she wrote to me while they were sailing the Whitsunday Passage. Just fabulous.


  1. gorgeous , gorgeous pics and even better description. Really took me there.

    And of course the seals waited until the Chinaman's Hat decayed to appropriate whiff levels. Remember Piglet, having been washed by Kanga, went and rolled and rolled in the dust until he was his own comfortable colour again. Who likes new?

  2. Lovely blog, Anne. I grew up 'crewing' for my father. A couple of years ago we took the boys out on the bay to that exact seal spot. There is bit of a story to the Chinaman's hat. It was built at GREAT cost to the Victorian Tax payer after an old platform wore out and the seals wouldn't use it because they had built the platform too high! They had to add the lower level which bumped the cost up to even more of a three figure number! Marion is right, it sure does stink but being able to see the seals is fantastic.

  3. I'm thinking if it stinks that much, I'll just enjoy them vicariously through your blog ;) But it's a very cool thing.

  4. I'm jealous. Sounds like a wonderful day. I have always wanted a close encounter with a seal or several. Why? Who knows? But Marion's letter was the next best thing.

  5. Jenny, I'd forgotten about Piglet and the rolling. My dog Chloe feels the same. The delights in finding something aromatically delicious (in dog terms) like a dead fish or some rotting bird and rolling in it. Never understands why I take to her with a sponge and coconut dog shampoo the minute we get home.

    Fiona, I didn't know you were a yachtie-child. And the seal platform is hugely popular — I know whenever I've taken the ferry over from Queenscliff to Sorrento, there's always a crowd at the rail, watching the seals.

    Nightsmusic, most of the time there's a fresh breeze, so you just have to be upwind and it doesn't stink at all

    Anne McA, one day you'll be here and we'll take you out to see the seals.